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BOISE -- Idaho state officials say 159,000 absentee ballots have been issued so far this year, a drop compared to the record absentee returns in the last presidential election.

Deputy Secretary of State Tim Hurst says the state won't know how many absentee ballots were actually cast until Tuesday. But even if every one issued this year were turned in, the total would still be nearly 40,000 lower than the nearly 200,000 absentee ballots cast in 2008.

Hurst says vote totals will likely be slow this year because the ballot is two pages long. Twenty-five counties statewide use optical scanning machines to tally votes, and each page has to be fed through the machine.

Hurst says voting results probably won't be in until Wednesday morning.

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